Food program supports international students
Brisbane’s international students in need are receiving thousands of meals a week thanks to a new initiative.
Brisbane Marketing’s Study Brisbane program has partnered with FareShare and Foodbank Queensland to deliver 10,000 free, nutritious meals a week, for eight weeks, to international students impacted by the coronavirus pandemic.
The initiative is designed to help support their wellbeing while they are living in the city.
The ready-to-eat meals are being delivered to Study Brisbane’s network of education providers for direct distribution to their international students who are facing financial hardship.
FareShare already cooks 40,000 meals a week which are distributed via Foodbank Queensland to frontline charities. Chief Operating Officer Kellie Watson said due to an increase in fresh food donations and a skilled brigade of chefs, FareShare had increased its production substantially.
“FareShare meals are easy to reheat, boost nutrition and contain two thirds of the recommended daily intake of vegetables and more than half for protein,” Ms Watson said.
Brisbane has one of Australia’s most diverse international student populations, with students coming from more than 160 countries.
The city is recognised as a world-class education destination, with more than 100 000 international students studying here in 2019.
Brisbane Marketing’s Head of Education Rachel Colaso said the education sector would rebound from this crisis in time but, in the short term, it was vital to demonstrate to those who had chosen to live and study here that Brisbane was a safe and welcoming city.
“This initiative is one way our comprehensive Study Brisbane program is supporting the education sector as it makes a valuable contribution to our local economy and the cultural diversity of our city,” Ms Colaso said.
International students who would like to be involved in the food support program should contact their institutions. Additional international student crisis assistance may be available through the Queensland Student Hub. Information and useful links can be found at studybrisbane.com.
Information on how to donate to Foodbank Queensland and FareShare can be found at Foodbank.org.au and fareshare.net.au.